Arundhati, 23 other writers, filmmakers return National Awards
New Delhi: Author
Arundhati Roy and 23 other National Award-winning writers and filmmakers,
including Saeed Mirza and Kundan Shah, on Thursday said they are returning
their awards as a "symbolic gesture" to draw the country's attention
to their fears in the "current atmosphere".
Saeed Mirza, a
screenwriter and director of Hindi films and television series, won the
National Award in 1996 for his film ‘Naseem’. Fellow filmmaker Kundan Shah also
announced that he would return the National Award he received for the iconic
1983 film “Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron”.
Other artistes and
writers who signed the resolution included Sanjay Kak, Ajay Raina, Tapan Bose,
Ranjan Palit and Anwar Jamal.
Roy, in an article published
in the Indian Express, said she was returning her 1989 National Award for Best
Screenplay for TV film 'In Which Annie Gives It Those Ones', starring Shah Rukh
Khan, to protest "ideological viciousness" in the country.
She said she was not
shocked by what was happening in the nation. She termed the lynching of a man
over beef-eating rumour in Dadri in Uttar Pradesh as a "deeper
murders are only a symptom of a deeper malaise. Life is hell for the living
too. Whole populations - millions of Dalits, adivasis, Muslims and Christians -
are being forced to live in terror, unsure of when and from where the assault
will come," she said.
In the article, she
referred to her action of returning the Sahitya Akademi Award in 2005 when the
Congress was in power and asked to be spared of the "old
"It has gone way
beyond all that," she said.
After the Dadri
incident, over 40 writers, artistes and 10 filmmakers have returned their
awards to record their protest over the rising incidents of intolerance in the
country. (With inputs from agencies)